The Courier & Advertiser (Perth and Perthshire Edition)

Trump issues ‘tapes’ warning to ex-FBI boss

fired: US President tweeted the comments directed at James Comey

- Julie pace

President Donald Trump said James Comey had better hope there are no “tapes” of their conversati­ons, in an apparent warning to his fired FBI director.

His tweet came the morning after he asserted Mr Comey had told him three times that he was not under FBI investigat­ion.

“I said ‘if it’s possible, would you let me know, am I under investigat­ion?’

“He said ‘you are not under investigat­ion’,” Mr Trump said in an interview with NBC News.

He said the discussion­s happened in two phone calls and at a dinner in which Mr Comey was asking to keep his job.

Mr Comey has not confirmed Mr Trump’s account.

On Thursday, The New York Times cited two unnamed Comey associates who recounted his version of a January dinner with the President in which Mr Trump asked for a pledge of loyalty.

Mr Comey declined, instead offering “honesty”.

When Mr Trump then pressed for “honest loyalty”, Mr Comey told him “you will have that”, the associates said.

White House spokeswoma­n Sarah Huckabee Sanders disputed the report and said the President would “never even suggest the expectatio­n of personal loyalty”.

Officials did not immediatel­y respond to questions about whether Mr Trump recorded his discussion­s with the former FBI director.

The President’s Twitter comments again raised the spectre of Richard Nixon, who secretly taped conversati­ons and telephone calls in the White House during the Watergate investigat­ion that ultimately led to his downfall.

Mr Trump’s firing of Mr Comey has already left him with the dubious distinctio­n of being the first President since Mr Nixon to fire a law enforcemen­t official overseeing an investigat­ion tied to the White House.

He wrote: “James Comey better hope that there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversati­ons before he starts leaking to the press!”

He also questioned whether his administra­tion should cancel all future press briefings and, instead, replace them with written responses to questions “for the sake of accuracy”.

 ??  ?? The Twitter feed raised the spectre of Richard Nixon and Watergate.
The Twitter feed raised the spectre of Richard Nixon and Watergate.
 ??  ?? Mr Comey was asking to keep his job.
Mr Comey was asking to keep his job.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United Kingdom